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The University of Southampton
Health SciencesPostgraduate study

Sandra Agyapong-Badu PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences, 2014


Sandra Agyapong-Badu's Photo

Hi, I'm Sandra Agyapong-Badu and I studied PhD in Rehabilitation Sciences within Health Sciences at the University of Southampton.

I chose the University of Southampton because of its commitment to excellent world-class research that really makes a difference to people’s lives. The Faculty of Health Sciences attaches significant importance to quality research and its experienced health professionals are internationally renowned.

Working as a qualified physiotherapist in my home country of Ghana, I was repeatedly faced with patients presenting the same problems over and over again.  This led me to question the evidence supporting my practise and really aroused my interest in research as I wanted to find better ways of improving patients' quality of life.

My MPhil/PhD programme developed from work at the Medical Research Council Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit at Southampton University Hospital. The battery of tests I am currently developing as part of my PhD will actually be used by clinicians at the hospital.

I was initiated in the University with an induction programme as well as a comprehensive research training programme. As an international student the induction helped me settle in and introduce me to the many facilities at my disposal such as supervisors, library and sporting facilities.

The support from supervisors and advisors is crucial for the successful completion of Doctoral study. Every student is part of a research group and the support of the research community is vital in encouraging the development of personal, professional and career goals.

Postgraduate study, unlike undergraduate study, requires a great deal of perseverance and dedication but it also offers the flexibility through full or part-time study routes.

What I personally find useful about studying here is the strong links the University has with the teaching hospital, which gives healthcare students the opportunity to draw on expertise of professionals in practice. This equips students with skills working in a multidisciplinary team which is useful for future roles in a changing healthcare environment.

As a researcher I am delighted with the opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration. Undertaking postgraduate study in such a world-class environment is challenging but also academically rewarding and is helping me achieve my ambitions and contribute my quota towards healthcare delivery and policy making.

After I complete my PhD I intend to return to Ghana and put my research into practise within the community.

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